View Full Version : Ejector
30th November 2004, 18:41
I have a Colt Combat Commander MKIV Stainless Steel that has been doing great except for eratic ejection. It worked O.K. but threw brass in all directions.
Found the ejector to be loose,but kept shooting anyway. The last time I cleaned it,I found the rear leg broken off.
I bought a new Colt ejector and fitted it very tight and didn't do anything to the tip.(wanted to try it out first)
Went to the range today and tried it out with 6 mags of Federal 230 match.
WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I never had a 1911 to chunk brass as this one did. It threw the brass 90 Deg. to the pistol and 20 Ft. away from me. 6 mags and every round was in an area about 6 ft. across and 20 ft. away.
Never saw this before!
30th November 2004, 19:28
Sounds like it is working correctly, now go out and start messing with it so we will have something to fix! :D
30th November 2004, 19:47
It's usually somethin' simple.... :cool:
1st December 2004, 06:39
20 Ft. Away? :confused:
Never had one to throw brass this far. I will have to make sure I'm always on the right side of firing line or beat the H*** out of other shooters with hot brass. :D
1st December 2004, 06:49
LOL Ken...it means that your extractor is workin' and your slide is movin' fast. A stronger recoil spring will cut the distance down, but maybe at the
cost of bolt-over-base feed problems on the last round. Try it and see...It it feeds the last round, go with it. The pistol will torque harder in your hand with a stiffer spring though.
As for the shooters to your right...Do you have a range queen or a weapon?
What's your priority? Ya want to be a popular guy at the range or you wanna pistol that'll get the brass outta the port when you're UTYAIA?
We must take off our shoes and define our terms... :cool:
'Bout ready to leggo of that Norinco yet? :D
1st December 2004, 07:40
Not yet!!! Haven't got to shoot it lately. Been under the weather(O.K. now),working on my loading room and had Kids,Grandkids and Great- Grandkids for Thanksgiving----Fried two big birds for all.
Got my Dillon set up yesterday and loaded 24 rds to try out before loading a big batch.
Been away from loading for nearly 4 years and forgot a lot of things. :D
1st December 2004, 07:45
Must have been exciting to have 2 purty ladies in your house at the same time ( Kelie & Vickie) for an old man like you :eek: :D
1st December 2004, 07:52
Good tip for old men who shoot pistols or semi-auto rifles.
Found a picker-upper at Home Depot , great for old men or women to pick up brass-----sure saves the back! :D
19th December 2004, 17:28
So my poor old 1973 Colt Combat Commander has been having a little trouble getting the empties out. No shame in that- it's got better than 30K through it, maybe a lot more. It's been hitting me in the forehead for a while, and even though there's not too much to hurt up there, the smudges are a bit unsightly, even on me. Plus, it's been leaving about one empty in forty laying backwards in the port and goofing up the works.
The extractor is a Wilson Bulletproof, and I've recently checked the tension according to the Wilson instructions.
I ordered a Wilson Extended ejector from Brownell's without really looking closely enough at the catalog specs and I wound up with a #34, intended for a Government Model, instead of the 34S for the shorter gun.
I followed Mr. Tuner's instructions to the micron (although, with all due respect, sir, what you refer to as a "triangular" file is better known to us wood types as a "saw" file, for sharpening handsaws). The thing goes in nicely- nice and snug, no daylight at the contact pads.
Then I look back in the Forum and notice there's a mention of different ejectors for Commanders... I do some backtracking and see that I might be off the track here altogether.
It works fine with dummy ammo here in the shop, sending the dummies up and out to the rear fairly well. The contact nose of the ejector is maybe 1/8" to 5/32" longer than the original, and of course, has that opposite slant from the stock one.
Should I go ahead and take it to the range, or do I have to be calling Brownell's again?
19th December 2004, 17:54
Ah! The difference between a toolmaker and a cabinet maker? The names of their tools and closer tolerances.
Your ejection issues were probably caused by a worn or under-tensioned extractor. Go shoot it and see what happens. Sometimes these things fall into place and sometimes they need a little attention to detail. As long as the ejector nose is longre than a stock GM extractor, and short enough to allow live-round ejection with factory hardball, it should work. The angle of exit may not be right, but at least it'll get'em out.
If ya run into anything else along the way, just sing out.
19th December 2004, 18:23
Thanks for the reply, Mr. Tuner. I actually changed out the extractor several months ago, and while it helped the old gun quite a bit, it still does a foible or two.
I should have said, more clearly, that I had just retensioned the Wilson extractor, prior to going with the ejector change, and followed very carefully the instructions that came with it.
I should add that sometimes I write instruction manuals and things like that, so naturally I love to read the instructions of things I've bought.
I believe I got it right, as far as I know. At least, the grain direction was good and I didn't get any splinters.
Still getting smacked in the head, and not only by persons. And that one-in-forty backwards-dying empty is bugging me.
Still, should I interpret this advice to suggest I go back over the dang extractor again? Man, we're getting tired of looking at each other.
The Wilson #34 ejector did actually look okay to my inexperienced eyeball, so I may just try with some live ammo and see what goes on.
The hardball dummies did indeed feed and eject fine, racking by hand.
This was my first gun, bought the day I turned twenty-one, so it's a mission of affection to keep it running. Divorce is not an option.
19th December 2004, 18:39
Your headshots are probably due to the slide smackin' the brass before the case can get clear of the port. The angle of release could also be a player.
Look for brass tracks around the port. Those marks are your signs.
The Wilson extractors are square at the bottom front edge of the hook.
Try radiusing that corner a little to change the way it releases. Check the hook depth too. If the hook gets too deep into the extractor groove, it can
put the case into a bind with the ejector as it tries to twist free. The hook should be .032-.035 inch from the tip to the bottom...where the rim makes contact. Draw the tip sideways toward you along a smooth mill file or medium India stone to shorten it if need be. Generally, the closer you can stay to .035 inch, the better. Be careful to keep the extractor level as you pull it, and check the depth often. Radius the bottom corner and lightly break the sharp corner at the top left by the cut.
The Bulletproof extractor is also a little rigid for best function. I modify all extractors to allow them to spring open a little easier by reducing the outboard pad by .020 inch or so. Be sure to relieve the sides next to the stem so it will have full sideways deflection. Reset the tension by laying it across the open jaws of a bench vise with the hook fully supported. Bump it
with a 4-ounce hammer on the inboard center pad to get a gentle curve over the length. Easy does it. Check the tension by hand feeding the top round of a magazine with the recoil spring plug removed. It should feed easily, and not let a round fall off the breechface.
If you have correct tension, and get failures to return to full battery, you have excessive stem bind...aka 3-point jam...and you need to tweak other places to get the gun squared away.
19th December 2004, 19:54
Allright, Mr. Tuner, I've performed the tasks assigned.
No, I've never noticed any brass marks in or around the port, ever.
It wasn't easy getting the Stanley steel tape to read out the extractor hook depth, but as near as I could tell, it came out to .034" right out of the Wilson package.
I thinned the middle back pad by a mere .017, chicken that I am, and then hit it with the four-pounder like you said. Pretty good at that hitting stuff thing, you know.
It holds a loaded round well now, maybe a tick on the tight side. I have to give the slide a pretty fair shake to dislodge a loaded round, instead of just a real light one like before.
It did feed a whole magazine of mixed ammo by hand-racking, perfectly.
I'll get it to the range and see what turns out.
In the meantime, I'm going back to my previous project of installing some Novak Lo-Mounts with my Model 77 Skil worm-drive and a Swanson square.
Thank you for your time. Unlike my advice to friends and customers, which gets roundly ignored, I'll take every bit of it I can get here.
19th December 2004, 20:05
FOUR POUND HAMMER??? :eek:
Might wanna invest in a decent dial caliper for takin' them measurements
there Bill... :D
Measure the whole end at the tip...then the whole end in the slot and subtract. Most Wilsons that I've seen are closer to .040 inch, but don't cut it until ya know for sure. .017 inch off the pad is good. That and the bowed shape will make it behave more like a spring. Plenty of tension and easy feed
under the hook.
Shoot that thing and report back!
21st December 2004, 18:59
Good evening, Mr. Tuner.
I've taken my old Combat Commander to the indoor range and came home convinced that, as you said, the extractor was the major offender in the failure-to-eject problem.
The headshots, however, still continue. If I use my best grip, a good solid one like you might expect an old carpenter to use, there's not much apparent recoil, but there's still an unsightly accumulation of dink marks in the forward starboard cranium. It happens about one in every dozen rounds, worse with stiffer loads.
I ran about 250 rounds through it, service hardball, reduced practice hardball, and lead SWCs. No hiccups whatsoever, so function is as good as it gets.
So I'm darned happy about the function.
Just wish I could get over the black crescents above my right eye. (A few even hit the safety glasses.) I'm ugly enough to start with and they aren't helping.
This was with the original Colt ejector reinstalled. I'm tempted to try my new Wilson #34 Government-length one just to see if I can get 'em to fly over, instead of into, the brain box.
Minor addendum: Relax, I do indeed own and use a nice caliper. The four-pound hammer, though...
I should also mention I got bold a couple months ago and installed an Ed Brown "drop-in" stainless barrel and it sure shoots a lot more accurately than I can ever remember it doing in three decades. Plus, it feeds better, too. It took me about an hour and a half to fit it in there and I couldn't be happier.
Thank you very much for your assistance. It went to some good use. Anybody wanna buy a surplus Para Companion?
21st December 2004, 20:06
Your headshots are being caused by the slide batting the case back toward you. This is indication of an early ejection that occurs when the slide still has a lot of speed, but the ejector's geometry may be kicking the case on too much of an upward slant. It may also be just a little too long.
Try this: Use a fine-cut file to cut a very light, downward angle on the top
of the ejector to lower the point of contact on the case. Use a shallow angle
and take just enough to cut about .003 inch off the top. If it gets better,
file straight across the face to shorten it about .003 inch, and recut the angle. Sometimes it takes a little juggling and patience to find the sweet spot. The trick is to take just a tiny bit so that if you're headed in the wrong direction, it can be reshaped easily without excess metal removal.
I know it sounds backward, but the lower on the case the ejector hits, the more straight out the ejection...and vice versa. Easy does it. A small change
makes big differences.
23rd December 2004, 18:23
Good evening once again, Mr. Tuner.
Truly this thread must be completely hijacked now, but I'm not sophisticated enough to reposition it properly.
In any event, after the very happy range session with the tweaked extractor, I decided to simply install my "overlength" Wilson #34 ejector, one that was longer than the original, in hopes of altering the ejection direction. This was contrary to your advice to experiment with shortening the original. Indeed, the new one is a good 1/8" longer.
So I sneaked over to the indoor range after work and emptied two boxes of practice hardball, one of semiwadcutters, and one of service hardball. The only time I got hit in the face was when the range officer stopped by and I had him run a magazine full through it- the first one bonked me squarely in the nose as I stood behind him and to his right.
I don't mean to seem unappreciative of your advice, but the outcome was satisfactory to a high degree, as now the empties depart with alacrity, and to the shooter's right.
23rd December 2004, 18:54
Howdy Bill...Excellent news!
Sometimes the contrary stuff works...In your case, it did. These things are a law unto themselves sometimes, and the same fix doesn't produce the same results on two identical pistols..and that's the essence of fine-tuning. Try one thing, and if it doesn't work...try somethin' else. :cool:
The mechanics of what you did was to change the timing of the release.
Sometimes it only takes a nanosecond of difference for the slide to miss it.
The main problem with extended ejectors is making sure that the gun will reliably eject live rounds. The longer the round's overall length, the more likely you are to hang one up in the port with an extended ejector. Factory hardball is the longest, on average.
The other part of the problem is that...if one does get stuck, most people will yank on the sldie to free it...and if the primer gets worked around to the nose of the ejector, it can set it off. Not good...Ask me how I know. :eek:
It caused me a few anxious seconds while I tried to figure out how I had managed to shoot myself in the hand while doing a hand-over-port live round ejection with an old Commander. The hole in my palm was a perfect semi-circle that matched the base of a bullet...and it took me a while to get up my nerve to turn my hand over to see if the hole went all the way through.
All's well that ends well though...Kudos!
18th January 2005, 20:14
My caspian use to put it out a good 10 feet from me,but I got smart,and now I make sure I always stand to the left of someone at the range!!!!
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